Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Links, housekeeping, and some random thoughts

By Finesse

- If you missed it yesterday, make sure to check out our podcast with Dan Steinberg of The Washington Post's D.C. Sports Bog.  You can listen below. We discuss the current state of the Pens-Caps rivalry, but also a whole lot more including what drives traffic to blogs, whether Ted Leonsis gets too down in the weeds with the fans, Fred Davis's bottle throwing incident, and more.  If you really just went Pens analysis, skip ahead to the 36:45 mark.  But you'd be making a mistake.

- Continuing the trend of great podcasts, Mike Colligan of the Hockey Writers will be joining us tomorrow night to talk about the trade deadline.  And Neil Greenberg of The Washington Post is mature enough to ignore our incessant trolling and will join us next Thursday night to discuss Alex Ovechkin and advanced "fancy" hockey stats.

- Offline, we've been having endless discussions about what Malkin and Letang's next contracts will look like.  I remain optimistic that the Pens can sign both at reasonable prices; Artistry is a little more skeptical.  In fact, he thinks one of them may have to be traded this offseason.  That post should be coming shortly.

- There's a lot of talk about how high the term-limits on the new CBA will push the average annual value (cap hit) of future contracts.  One factor that I think has been under-discussed in speculation about how high salaries may get is the ENORMOUS pressure that would be put on any player who accepted a max deal.  The biggest difference between hockey and basketball, which also has "max" contracts, is that having the best player in basketball means you're probably winning the title.  LeBron taking a max deal doesn't prevent Miami from signing anyone who would actually make a difference. But if the Leafs were to sign Stamkos to a max deal in 2016, it would mean they'd have significantly less money to invest in positions that actually determine their success or failure.  A 3rd and 4th line comprised of 6 guys making the league minimum means your team is probably going to be bad.

This won't restrain every owner in the league from offering someone a max contract, but it may restrain a player from taking one.

- I'll be at the game in Long Island on Friday night.  Make sure to follow me on Twitter.  And follow Artistry, too.


  1. Is that cat the newest member of GTOG?

  2. Could Paul Martin be a trade candidate instead of Letang? His value is high, and Depres may step into an offensive role.

    1. Sure, that's possible. But if we do manage to lock up Letang and Malkin this summer, there is no rush to shake up the roster, as those new contracts will not kick in until 2014-15. If Martin continues this run of stellar play through next year, his value will be quite high next summer as a 33 year old top 4 d-man with 1 year and $5 million left on his deal. Amazing how things change, is it not?

    2. Martin still has, in my opinion, a better ability to lead the power play. Letang has looked better on it since Martin took over but I don't think he's there yet.